By Steve DeSanto
A time travel romance by Jude Deveraux, Judith O'Brien, or Johanna Lindsey, can be a brief and pleasant escape from reality. And who can't use a nice little escape every now and then? We also engage in another form of time travel when we daydream. But after a few minutes, the here-and-now returns like a bad toothache. We find ourselves coping with the same old problems, some of which stem from emotionally upsetting garbage in our past.
What if you could travel back in time to prevent those traumatic circumstances or events from happening that still upset you today? Would you jump at the chance to make that trip and find lasting relief?
Well, you're in for a surprise - not because someone invented a real time machine - but because there's a method that works almost magical mental change that visiting your past for real couldn't even accomplish. And that's saying a lot! After all, if you went back and really changed what happened, you couldn't be sure your meddling wouldn't make your current life worse.
Before I reveal some strange details of a new and almost foolproof technique, I want to address a common misconception many people have about "What Might Have Been." Iím talking about the idea that if something bad had NOT happened, you'd be a lot happier today. This may not necessarily be true because how you interpret an event is more likely the real issue that weighs you down.
Now donít stop reading just because you think the only thing Iím writing about is how to rethink and change your viewpoint. Iím not! While itís true a viewpoint or attitude shift can make a big difference in how you think and feel, thatís not the main subject of this article. After all, we change how we think about many things on a daily basis. But youíve probably already tried changing how you think about those upsetting things in your past, but it didnít delete the trauma you still feel. Right? After all, you know what happened actually happened. And you feel totally justified hanging on to anger and resentment related to those events. You canít imagine not being upset whenever you remember. Now, I want to touch on the importance of "viewpoint" for a moment, but then we'll move on to The Technique that could bring real peace to your life. Stay with me, and you wonít be disappointed.
Years ago, my wife and I talked to a middle-aged woman named "Jane" who told us she'd grown up in a home with a blind mother. "Since Mom was blind," she said, "everyone had to make sure they didnít move any furniture, because if we did, Mom might bump into it or fall." Jane went on to state, "So you see, the reason Iím so particular about everything being in its place is because of how I grew up." It sounds like good sense, and people everywhere use this reasoning. However, I then asked Jane, "Do you have any siblings?" and she said, "Oh, yes, I have a brother."
Can you guess my next question? "Is your brother as particular about everything having a place and being in its place?" She laughed and said, "No! Heís just the opposite!"
So, Janeís reasoning was faulty, but I wanted you to see an example of two people responding in different ways to the same stimulus. No, most people wouldnít say this was a tragic situation that could scar anyone for life. And yet, as I write these words, probably somewhere thereís a woman who did have a blind mother and she feels strongly that if only her mom hadnít been blind, the family's life experiences might have been richer and not so limited. I can hear her telling a friend, "If Mom hadnít been blind our family would have been able to go on normal vacations like other families." The truth is, the reason we do what we do has less to do with what happened and more to do with our own personalities, perceptions, and attitudes.
Okay, forget viewpoint for the moment. Let's move on to something more important, the technique you can use to eliminate your trauma for good. It's one that amazes and surprises everybody. They can't believe it works so well. If you've been to a counselor or therapist, chances are you weren't told about the process for several reasons. The main one is they didn't know anything about it.
Iíd never related EFT (Also known as Emotional Freedom Techniques) to time travel until recently. But in my endless quest to explain the unreal quality of this amazingly real process to newbies, the thought occurred to me, "Hey, EFT practitioners use this process on a daily basis and get great permanent results, and they don't even think about how close those results are to real time travel." After all, if you could really travel back in time, you would like to be able to change circumstances or events that traumatized you for the rest of your life. Right? Your reasoning is, If the "bad stuff" didn't happen, youíd have no trauma. In other words, the trauma and the events are intertwined. If one exists, the other must exist, too.
People can be in counseling or therapy for years and still feel the trauma associated with their upsetting past. Many people take medications in their search for relief, but the meds rarely bring the kind of relief being sought. ( Plus psych meds often cause terrible side effects. )
Well, EFT can actually delete the feeling of trauma or overwhelming upset related to a past event. And the relief is usually permanent! I say ďusuallyĒ because nothing is ever 100% all the time in every case. But if it's not permanent, there's a reason, and EFT can be used to address the aspects of the trauma that were missed the first time around.
EFT is often called ďemotional acupuncture without the needles.ĒYou tap with your fingers on certain places on your face and body (Yes, it sounds silly, doesnít it?) while focusing on a negative thought, event, or circumstance, the more specific, the better. The body locations where you tap correlate with energy meridians discovered and used by acupuncturists in China for centuries. The theory is: When we experience over-the-top emotions connected with certain negative events in our lives, we somehow get short-circuited. By thinking about or referring to a negative event while tapping the meridian points, we're able to neutralize or normalize the out-of-sync subtle energy charge that's been causing the traumatic emotion. What this amounts to is ďerasing the emotional upsetĒ weíve always associated with that particular event.
The time travel part is experienced like this: Say there was an upsetting event in your past. It always upsets you when you think about it. Always. No exceptions! Iím talking emotion so over-the-top you avoid thinking about this event at all costs. In fact, just thinking about what happened would probably prevent you from stepping into a real time machine and going back to revisit the real circumstances. But with the aid of EFT, you can give the event a name while avoiding the details. Then you guess how emotionally intense (0-10) you "might feel" if you were to watch the event unfold like a movie. Let's say you decide your intensity might be 10. You do the EFT tapping process (which takes only a minute) while stating the event title. Then you revisit your intensity level. How upset would you "probably be" IF you looked at the upsetting details of this personal movie?
Strangely, you feel your intensity might only be 7, now. So you do the process again. Your intensity is 5. Huh? How could that be? You repeat the process. Your possible intensity you now guess might be only a 2. What's going on? Somethingís not right. So far, you havenít even thought of the upsetting details, yet youíre guessing your level of upset is only a 2? Now you feel confident enough to run the event in your mind like a movie, and you see those details unfold again. But wait! Youíve NEVER wanted to do that before, you've never been able to! Whatever it was about this event that always made you fall apart is now having little or no effect on you. How could that be?
Now, as you run the movie you see that person wearing the red shirt and heís screaming. Youíre upset again. Your emotional intensity is at 7 regarding that person. So you do the EFT process again, this time focusing on that person screaming. Your intensity drops back down. Itís only a 1 now. Thatís amazing because the screaming person caused the entire event thatís been upsetting you all these years! Youíve never been able to think of him or this event without a huge emotional charge. Huge! You do one more round of EFT. And now, oddly, nothing about the whole event feels traumatic. Nothing. In fact, you feel like youíre watching a movie that happened to somebody else. Pretty impressive, but you know your relief wonít last.
Two weeks later, your EFT session comes to mind. You remember the traumatic event you addressed with EFT, only the event is not upsetting you at all. Youíre sure if you think about it long enough, the old intensity will return and hit you hard again. But no, you canít cause it to bother you no matter how long you focus. You even think perhaps it never bothered you as much as you thought it did.
And thatís a typical response, too. People who get wonderful relief using EFT have such a momentous shift in their thinking they sometimes forget how upsetting the issue was before treating it with EFT. This phenomenon is so common, it has a name. The Apex Effect.
Now, do you see why I relate EFT to time travel? No, you donít change WHAT happened. But you feel the same kind of astonishing relief that you would if youíd actually changed the circumstance or event that caused the trauma in the first place!
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